Elevate: Michelle Godwin

March 01, 2023 00:18:33
Elevate: Michelle Godwin
Elevate
Elevate: Michelle Godwin

Mar 01 2023 | 00:18:33

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Show Notes

Host Timothy Webb sits down with Michelle Godwin to discuss her position at National Park College as well as her journey to becoming a Nighthawk.

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Episode Transcript

Timothy Webb: Thank you all for joining us today here on Elevate, Broadcasting from the Razorback Camper Sales Studio. This National Park College podcast highlights a different Nighthawk with each episode. We'll talk about their journey, challenges, key moments of success, their moments of elevation, leveling up and overcoming. I'm Timothy Webb, your host, and I'd like to welcome to the program Michelle Godwin. Thanks so much for joining me today. Michelle Godwin: Thanks for having me here, Tim. Timothy Webb: Oh, yeah. So tell us a little bit about yourself, Michelle. Michelle Godwin: Well, I am originally from Cabot, Hot Springs Transplant. So actually I live in Bismarck, but Hot Springs is home now and has been since 2004. Timothy Webb: Here at National Park, what's your position? Michelle Godwin: I am executive assistant to the president, Dr. Hogan. Timothy Webb: Oh man. The things that must go across your desk. What all does that position entail? Michelle Godwin: Oh, quite a bit. A lot of scheduling calendar events. Part of my position is also liaison to the board of trustees, so there's a lot of juggling with them and making sure that they have all the information that they need and here where they need to be or elsewhere where they need to be. Timothy Webb: Yeah, that sounds challenging there. So you got to get all the board here when they're supposed to be here and all that? Michelle Godwin: Yes. Timothy Webb: Oh my gosh. Bless you. Michelle Godwin: They are so easy to work with though. Timothy Webb: Oh, yeah. Michelle Godwin: Yes. Timothy Webb: Well, that's good. So, Michelle, are you an NPC alum or where did you go to school? Michelle Godwin: I am an NPC alum. I started here in fall of 2014. My daughter was graduating high school in 2015, and I thought, what better example I could give her than to go back to college myself. And so I started late in 14, and then she and I actually were able to take some classes together in 15 after she graduated high school. Timothy Webb: Oh, that's so cool. That's so cool. Michelle Godwin: She got me through the math. Timothy Webb: I'm afraid if I would do that, I'd be like the bad influence on my son, throwing airplanes across the room. Michelle Godwin: It was nice to have her right there next to me, because after 20 years of not being in school to go back, I really felt the jitters. Timothy Webb: Yeah. What an awesome experience that must have been. Michelle Godwin: It was. It was. Timothy Webb: So what field did you study? Michelle Godwin: Actually, not anything of what I'm in now. Beginning in high school, I started working in physical therapy and I was a physical therapy assistant until I moved to Hot Springs and became an office manager for a physical therapy clinic. I worked my way up to about as far as I could go with that, and that's when I decided I probably should go back to school. I wanted to pursue physical therapy, although I'd been in it for 20 years, so it was all second nature to me anyway. But I started undergrad with the intent to go on to the doctoral program with physical therapy, and that's what I started here to get my basics. And I moved on to UAMS. So my undergrad is actually in diagnostic medical sonography. Timothy Webb: What? Michelle Godwin: Ultrasound. Timothy Webb: Oh, okay. Michelle Godwin: So I figured that that was going to be a good mix because it can be used as a diagnostic tool in outpatient physical therapy. And I got all the way through undergrad, did all my observation hours. I was just a keystroke away from submitting all my applications. And then the pandemic hit, I mean, right in the middle of it. So I had to reevaluate, and that eventually brought me back here. NPC is home to me. And so I came back here and it was an easy decision to go on, not for physical therapy, but leadership. Timothy Webb: Okay. Wow. That's quite a journey. I studied fitness. I was a personal trainer for a few years. Michelle Godwin: Oh, okay. Timothy Webb: So we were in similar fields. So Michelle, being the executive assistant to the president, what are some of the challenges that you face? Michelle Godwin: I think the biggest challenge is juggling calendars and making sure that there are scheduled events in the right places, in the right times, that all the key ingredients are there for something to run smoothly. And so I love detail oriented things, and this is very detail oriented. So it's been a learning curve every day because it's always something new. Timothy Webb: Are there any common myths about being the executive assistant to the president? I'm not sure what they'd be, but are there any common myths that you'd like to clear up for our listeners? Michelle Godwin: I don't know that there are any. And if they are, I don't... Timothy Webb: I'm afraid you're too busy to notice them. Michelle Godwin: Right. Timothy Webb: So Michelle, what were some of the biggest obstacles that you had to overcome to get to where you are today? Michelle Godwin: Well, seeing as though I started college later in life, I would say that the biggest obstacles are being a parent and getting your kids through the same thing that you're going through at the exact same time, has presented some hurdles that I never would've seen. But I also think that that put me in a good position to be a leaning post for them also. Timothy Webb: Yeah. That's a unique experience that you and your daughters had. I never would've dreamed of going to school with my parents. I wouldn't have known what that would've been like. Michelle Godwin: Yeah. Timothy Webb: I probably would've acted a lot better. So what is it about your position that rewards you? Michelle Godwin: Seeing students succeed. Seeing the students' success and knowing that you can be just a little part of that. If you can help one student succeed, every bit of the work is worth it. Timothy Webb: Are there any lessons that your position is taught you'd like to share? Michelle Godwin: Lessons? There's lots of lessons. I think I have a new lesson every day. Agility. It's actually a topic I'm studying in school right now is learning agility. And it's a concept that I would've never thought of before, but how we can be agile in our ability to learn. I think that daily I'm tasked with how can I make this better? Or how can processes improve or be more streamlined? Timothy Webb: That's interesting to think about a word like agility in the context of learning. Because when I think of agility, I think of movement, body movement. So it's interesting to think of it in the context of learning. Michelle Godwin: You have to keep your mind agile, just like your body. Timothy Webb: Yeah. Yeah. Makes sense. So you're studying leadership right now? Michelle Godwin: Yes. Timothy Webb: You're in the doct- Michelle Godwin: I'm' in the master's program at John Brown University. Timothy Webb: Oh, okay. Michelle Godwin: And will be finishing in May. Timothy Webb: Ooh, all right. Michelle Godwin: Thank goodness. Timothy Webb: Yes. Yes. We'll be celebrating together. I'll be finishing my bachelor's around that time. Michelle Godwin: Oh, yeah. Timothy Webb: So I'm so excited. Michelle Godwin: Party time. Timothy Webb: Party time. Excellent. That's a Wayne's World reference. Michelle Godwin: Wait, you just showed your age there. Timothy Webb: Yeah, I know. That's so funny you said that, because often I'll point out to my son who's 10, the different references in songs or in pop culture that date that particular work. You hear it a lot in songs. You'll hear it in old rap songs, they'll make a reference to a beeper. And it's like, well, nobody has a beeper anymore. Michelle Godwin: Yeah. Kids now say, what is a beeper? Timothy Webb: Yeah. Yeah. What is that? So Michelle, what achievements are you most proud of? Michelle Godwin: I would have to say that keeping children alive is probably my... Timothy Webb: Yeah, that's a good one. Michelle Godwin: I think my biggest achievement is finishing school right now. Because it's a challenge to work full-time, school full-time, mother full-time, wife full-time. Timothy Webb: Yeah. You have to work for it, don't you? Michelle Godwin: Yeah. Timothy Webb: It's not given to you. And if it was easy, everybody would do it. Michelle Godwin: Exactly. Timothy Webb: So Michelle, where did you grow up and what was it like there? Michelle Godwin: I actually grew up in Southwest Little Rock, and we moved to Cabot when I was just starting high school. And my early years, my family was one of the first homeschooling families in Arkansas. My parents helped to pass the legislation that legalized homeschooling for Arkansas. And so I did some homeschooling young. But then when we moved to Cabot, I attended Cabot schools for one year, and then went back to homeschooling and missed the socialization. So I actually graduated, I went back to public school and graduated Cabot. And directly after high school, I got married and moved to Alaska. So I've been a little bit of everywhere. But growing up in Cabot at that time, it was still small town, and I love that small town feel. And that's why it was not a hard transition from Cabot to Hot Springs, because Hot Springs has that small town atmosphere also. Timothy Webb: Yeah. I grew up in a small town too. I grew up in a town called Glenwood. Actually, if you want to be completely honest, I grew up in a little town called Cattle Gap, which is really small, a hundred people. Michelle Godwin: Oh, wow. Timothy Webb: Yeah. Michelle Godwin: When we first moved to Cabot, I think the population sign read something around 6,000, and now it's about 30,000. So it's no longer a small town. Timothy Webb: Yeah. Michelle, can you tell us about an influential person and how they impacted your life? Michelle Godwin: I would have to say my mother and father. My mother, she was a reader. She constantly read. So where she didn't have a formal education, she was probably the smartest person I know. And she got that from reading, and she passed on that love of learning and expanding your own horizons. My father, he has been influential because for as long as I can remember from my first memories, he passed on to love others as Christ would. And when you're given that foundation, that base to grow on, you don't forget that. And I think that that's what influences my daily decisions. Timothy Webb: Michelle, any favorite childhood memories you'd like to share? Michelle Godwin: Well, speaking about my father, I have a memory that I play back every day. I was in elementary school and we were going to a private Christian school then. So my parents had to drive us there in the morning. I guess I had had a really bad morning being the typical tantrum thrower was, my siblings would tell you that. He pulled over and he turned around and he said, "Your day is what you make it." And he explained that you get up every day and you make that choice, and it's something that you have to do. It's a thought you have to have. And if you wake up every morning and say, my day is what I'm going to make of it, I'm going to make it a positive day. I'm going to make it something that somebody else can look at and say, okay, if they can do that, I can too. That kind of thing. And so my mother had a Volkswagen bus and my dad had a Volkswagen bus, so I could still see him turned around in that seat sitting there explaining to me that your day is what you make it. Timothy Webb: That's so true. That's so true. Because our thoughts become our mood and become our actions, become our words. So yeah, that's a hundred percent. That's good stuff. If you could give your younger self any piece of advice, what would it be? Michelle Godwin: Patience. Have patience. My family teases me about hesitating before I speak, and they make fun of me about it, just picking on me. But I probably would've started that a lot sooner. Give yourself three seconds before you respond to something. It makes you think, okay, did that really need to come out of my mouth or not? Timothy Webb: Yeah. Was you an impatient kid? Michelle Godwin: I was. I was the middle child or one of the middle of seven. So I picked on my younger siblings and I gave my older siblings a hard time. So being in the middle sometimes is more fun. Timothy Webb: I think you're the first middle child that's ever said that. So what is it about NPC that brought you here? Michelle Godwin: Sense of family. Initially as a student, I came here because of the affordability and proximity to home. But I've stayed here and I've returned, and I've wanted to be involved over the years because of the sense of family. I haven't met one person that's ever worked for NPC or attended NPC that didn't say that they felt like it was a family here. And we treat each other with respect. And I think that that is what keeps bringing me back. Timothy Webb: I feel like I'm beating this drum a lot here lately, but that's so true. And I've said the same exact thing now to three guests in a row, and I'm not the one bringing it up. The guests are always the one bringing it up, that we have this sense of family here and this kind of close-knit campus, and everybody treats each other with respect. And we have such a good work culture and work environment here, even though a lot of our jobs are very hard and very difficult, but we all kind of come together and help each other when we can. Michelle Godwin: It's collaboration. Timothy Webb: Other than NPC and doing a bunch of homework, do you have any hobbies you'd like to share? Michelle Godwin: I like to antique. I like to wander around flea markets and secondhand stores. And I think that if I were to say I had a hobby, it would be lighting. I like to find random things and turn them into lights. So rewiring or repurposing something into a light. And I don't know why, other than maybe my father is an electrical engineer. I'm drawn to electricity. I don't know. Timothy Webb: Yeah, that's so cool. In fact, I was just in this little coffee shop here in town, I think it's called The Hideaway, and they had a tuba with a big light, and they had it hanging right over there, the register. It would've been right up your alley. Michelle Godwin: I like that, when you turn something into something that you would not typically see as a light, turn it into a light. Timothy Webb: Yeah. And I love thrift shopping too. It's a lot of fun. And we love yard sales. I've often said that in my little area of Glenwood and Pearcy and all this area, feels like it's almost the yard sale capital of the world in the summertime. Michelle Godwin: It is. Timothy Webb: There's always yard sales. Michelle Godwin: Yeah. You can't go down a mile of the road without seeing one. Yeah. Timothy Webb: I know. I know. Michelle Godwin: And I have to stop. Timothy Webb: Yeah. I have to stop. If I got time and I got some dollars in my pocket, I'm stopping. They might have something I just have to have, $5 guitar or something. Michelle Godwin: Exactly. Timothy Webb: I think I've actually bought a guitar yard sold about five bucks before. Michelle Godwin: Wow. I could turn it into a light. Timothy Webb: There you go. So what is it about antiquing that drew you to it? Michelle Godwin: It's seeing something for what it's not, so seeing the potential. And I guess that can be also tied back to why I love NPC so much, because you can't walk through the campus without seeing potential. And to be able to draw that potential out of something. That's what I see in those antiques. What can it be? What was it at one time and what can it be again? Timothy Webb: Yeah. I could see that in reference to students too, seeing those students come in young and seeing they haven't developed into their potential yet. Michelle Godwin: Yes. Timothy Webb: Yeah. If you could talk to anybody from the past, present, or future, who would it be and why? Michelle Godwin: I would love to pick Winston Churchill's brain. Timothy Webb: Wow. Michelle Godwin: I probably don't know as much about him as I should, but everything that I've read about him is just so impressive that I would love to just sit and get his idea on strategy and intellect. Timothy Webb: Michelle, what are your future plans? Michelle Godwin: Well, finishing school in May, and at this point, that's all that I have in my sights. But I would love to grow here at NPC and help NPC grow into the potential that I know that it has. Timothy Webb: Any advice, quotes, or mottoes you live by that you'd like to leave our listeners with? Michelle Godwin: Well, I guess I'd have to go back to that favorite memory. Your day is what you make it. Timothy Webb: Michelle Godwin, thank you so much for joining me today on Elevate. I really appreciate it. Michelle Godwin: Thank you, Tim. This has been fun. Timothy Webb: And thanks to all of you for listening to Elevate today from the Razorback Camper Sales Studio. New episodes are released each Thursday. Special thanks to National Park College and the Sentinel-Record for making this podcast possible. Until next time, this is Timothy reminding you that every day is a chance to elevate.

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